Hockey is one of the most popular contact games played in the US and other side of world, probably next only to soccer and rugby. There are more than a few versions of hockey played such as field, inline, rink and ice hockey. All use particular gear and equipment.
The basic apparatus of hockey is a stick, which may be about three feet long. The sticks are round and generally made of wood sheltered with fiberglass; aluminum sticks are also used and both varieties feature suede and rubber grips. Field hockey sticks have hooked bases, which are rounded at one end and flat at the other to correctly smack the ball into the goal. Ice and inline hockey sticks have broader bases and most are considered for right-handed players. Holding the stick the upper portion of the stick with your left hand and the lower portion with your right, the base curves forward, forming a shallow scoop for catching and guiding the puck.
In hockey uses a molded plastic ball and ice hockey, inline hockey use hard vulcanized rubber discs called pucks. Both the balls are sized according to hockey associations. The objective of any version of the game is to guide the ball and puck towards the goal net. Goal nets are made of by steel frames and have durable synthetic nylon nets.
Protective equipment and team jerseys are just as important as the skates or footwear, the stick and the puck. Protective hockey equipment is comprised of a chest protector, a helmet, large padded shorts, shin pads, a neck protector, and other gear. Make sure you use all protective equipment whenever you play this game. Some pickup games of hockey are not played with protective equipments, but safety should come first.
Hockey is a collision sport and injuries do happen. But with certified, quality, well-fitting gear, the frequency and severity of these injuries can be decreased.
Helmets and Facemasks
Mostly hockey injuries happen to the head and face. Lacerations (cuts) to the head and face, along with concussions, have been minimized by the mandatory wearing of helmets and face masks at most levels of play. In youth, high school, and college hockey, helmets and facemasks are mandatory.
When buying a helmet, make sure it fits snugly. Look for helmets with the seal of approval either from the HECC (Hockey Equipment Certification Council)
Gloves and Elbow Pads
Your gloves must give maximum protection without affecting your grip. The thumb, the palm, and the cuff of the wrist are regularly hit by opposing players' sticks. Buy gloves with maximum protection over the thumb. Make sure the palm of the glove is smooth, so you can feel the stick in your hand. The cuff of the glove should be elastic but still offer protection. And certain the laces of the gloves are always tied and in good condition, your elbow pads fit well and cover the sides and the back part of the elbow.
Better leg guards have a knee cup pad, twist padding to cover the sides of the knee, and wide side flaps. Make sure they are not too large and the length is correct.